When you ask a recent PC-to-Mac switcher why they love their Macs, they usually can’t give you a definite answer. You hear responses like, “… it’s great!”, or, “… it runs so well and fast”. Nothing very definitive. For me, it was the advanced hardware (27″ LED screen with Intel i7 Quad-Core processor, 64-bit OS) that lured me in, but what’s really exciting me are the little things you find in the Mac OS X.
For example, when you highlight a file name in Finder and tap the spacebar, you get an instant preview of that file. Whether it’s a PDF file, Word document, text file, JPG image, etc. a preview is rendered in seconds on the screen. A very handy and helpful feature. You can also setup Finder to preview your files in “Coverflow” format, where you can scroll or flick through them very quickly (like in the iTunes app).
The fact that everything seems to work out-of-the-box without any significant fiddling with dialog boxes and drivers is refreshing also. The installation of software is a breeze, often just requiring you to drag the single application file over to your Applications Folder. Viola!
If I find an image on a web page that I want to copy, I can simply drag that image from the web page to my Mac’s desktop and it is saved instantly. No need to right-click, select “Save As…”, give it a file name and location, etc.
One really cool app that I’ve got loaded is called Growl, which is a notification system for various apps installed on my system. So for example whenever I get an email message I get a banner rolling up from the bottom of my screen notifying me of the new message. Sure, MS-Outlook has a similar notification box, but Growl’s notification looks much more polished. Again, it’s the little things that makes me like the Mac OS X.
To compress or zip a file, I just right-click on the file (or folder) in Finder and select “Compress”. A zip file is created instantly, and I didn’t need to find and install some Zip compression product.
On my PC I created a batch file that contained some cryptic commands to zip up files in a folder and then copy it to my DropBox folder for syncing to the Cloud. On my Mac, I used an interactive utility called Automator (comes with the Mac OS X) which allowed me to build up a similar script with easy-to-understand building blocks. I now have the same functionality of my previous DOS batch file, but it was much easier to create and use.
So as you can see there’s lots of small things that makes me more productive on the Mac, and thus justifies my move over to the Mac platform. It certainly is a big switch, and I’m surprised that I’m adapting so well in just two days. So we’ll just see if this enthusiasm continues… 🙂